Postseason play gets underway tonight, as District 8 has a pigtail game, with the winner advancing to next Monday's quarterfinals. There are still a number of games on tap this weekend that will help determine the final brackets.
A pigtail game will be needed in District 1, where Nucla and Dove Creek from the San Juan Basin will go at it for the third time in a month. Nucla has won both previous meetings (40-14, 58-33). The Mustangs finished fourth in the SJB, while the Bulldogs came in last. The winner will move on to face North Park. The Wildcats earned a higher finish in the Western Slope League than De Beque by virtue of their 51-48 victory over the Dragons.
The highest 1A finisher in the SJB, Ouray, will square off with De Beque in the other semifinal. The Trojans lost a 35-32 contest at De Beque in December, but won a January home game against the Dragons, 45-29.
The pigtail is slated for Tuesday. Semifinals take place on Thursday and the championship will be played on Friday. Only the top two finishers will advance to regionals.
Unbeaten Kit Carson looks to remain that way when they visit Cheyenne Wells on Friday. The Wildcats own the tiebreaker over their two closest challengers, giving them the High Plains League title and the top seed in the tournament. Those two challengers, Eads and McClave, will square off on Friday, with the winner gaining a second place finish in the league and the #2 seed, while the loser falls to third in both.
Cheyenne Wells sits fourth, ahead of Granada and Cheraw. The latter two will play on Friday, looking to avoid being the sixth seed. Three teams will advance to regionals.
With an earlier win over Kim/Branson, South Baca earned the Ark Valley league title. The Patriots have a one game lead over the Mustangs for the top seed in District 3. They still have a game with Springfield on Thursday, and the Longhorns can claim a third place finish with the upset. A Springfield loss creates a three-way tie for third, with Wiley and Holly. Walsh is sixth, without a win over a team in the field.
The top three finishers will advance to regionals.
Three “outsiders” will join the North Central League's six regulars in District 4. Heritage Christian, the Mile High League champion, will be the top seed because of a better RPI than NCL champion, Fleming. Things get interesting after the top two spots. Briggsdale currently sits third, and can lock up that spot with a victory over Prairie on Friday. However, if Prairie can upset both Fleming and Briggsdale, the Mustangs would move ahead of the Falcons.
Sitting between Briggsdale and Prairie is Caliche (LPAA). The Buffs can go into the tournament as the four seed, or under the aforementioned scenario, they would slide to fifth. Weldon Valley sits alone in sixth, and Longmont Christian (Mile High) is seventh. Monday night's pigtail game will have #8 Peetz facing #9 Pawnee for the third time this season. Peetz is 2-0 against the Coyotes. The winner of that will advance to the quarterfinals against Heritage Christian.
This district will qualify three teams to regionals.
Arickaree/Woodlin's 35-30 victory over Idalia on Tuesday gave the Indian-Mustangs the YW-KC League title. In two previous meetings with the Wolves, Arickaree/Woodlin had scored a total of 39 points and had lost both games. A one-point win head-to-head gives Otis the edge over Hi-Plains for the third spot. Hi-Plains needs a win over Bethune to maintain its hold on fourth place. Stratton/Liberty, out of the Union Pacific, is sixth. The top three finishers will move on to regionals.
Antonito will be the top seed in next week's tournament, thanks to wins over La Veta and Sangre de Cristo, who are tied for second. Sangre has a big game with Sierra Grande on Friday and then the T-Birds visit La Veta on Saturday. Sierra Grande is fourth, one game back of the pair in second. Cotopaxi sits fifth, just ahead of Creede/Lake City, because of a head-to-head victory over the Miners, with Primero hot on both of their heels. Aguilar, Manzanola and Moffat round out the field, which will only qualify two teams to regionals this year.
Last Friday's 46-18 win over Elbert gave Kiowa the lead in the Black Forest League, but the Indians still have to face Edison, who can create a three-way tie for the top spot with an upset. Hanover is fourth, right ahead of Pikes Peak Christian, Deer Trail, and Genoa-Hugo. Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind is last, still looking for its first win of the season. The top three finishers from this district move on to regionals.
The first district to get underway is District 8, home of the 5280 league. A pigtail game will be played on Thursday, with Beth Eden Baptist facing Thorncreek Christian. They are the eighth and ninth seeded teams, respectively. Beth Eden won the regular season contest, 34-27. The winner advances to face the top seed, Jim Elliot Christian, on Saturday. The other quarterfinal in the top half of the drawn has #4 Front Range Baptist hosting #5 Shining Mountain. Front Range Baptist earned a close 32-28 victory over the Lions a month ago.
The lower half of the bracket sees #2 Rocky Mountain Lutheran hosting #7 Cornerstone Christian, and #3 Denver Jewish Day hosting #6 Belleview Christian. Both hosts beat their opponents the first time around. The game between DJDS and Belleview will be played early on Friday afternoon, to avoid a conflict with the Sabbath.
Three teams from this district will join qualifiers from District 4 and District 5 at regionals.